Posts Tagged ‘italy’

Photo: Smithsonian Studies Abroad in Florence, Italy

Thursday, December 17th, 2009
One of Galileo's famous telescopes

One of Galileo’s famous telescopes

There’s always a part of us that looks back on when we were teenagers and asks, “What would I have done differently?”

Maybe you would have eaten a little healthier or been a little kinder to that kid that didn’t have many friends. Perhaps you wouldn’t have had your class picture taken with that terrible haircut. For many of us who love to travel, we imagine going back in time and telling ourselves, “You really should study abroad.” Maybe you can’t change the past, but that doesn’t mean you can’t give a little advice to your grandson, daughter, or nephew.

Smithsonian Journeys is proudly introducing a new program this year specifically for high school students called Smithsonian Studies Abroad. Students will not only learn a new language, they will experience living in a new culture by discussing social and political issues with fantastic guest speakers, explore the host country on weekend excursions, and interact with the local community.

One of our inaugural programs is located in Florence, Italy, the homeland of Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, and Galileo. Whether you are a future historian, artist, or scientist, Florence is and always has been significant city center to them all.

Learn more about Renaissance Treasures, our new program for high school students in Florence, Italy

Did you study abroad when you were in high school? Share below.  

Photo: Florence, Italy

Tuesday, October 6th, 2009
A view of Florence's Uffizi Gallery, along the banks of the Arno. Photo: Ben Crochet, Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

A view of Florence’s Uffizi Gallery, along the banks of the Arno. Photo: Ben Crochet, Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

Florence is an ideal location for the study of art, whether you’re in high school or looking for new insights a bit later in life. The Uffizi gallery, completed in 1581, was opened to visitors by request shortly thereafter and opened to the public in 1765. It houses many works originally collected by the Medici family; its world-class collection of paintings includes works by Da Vinci, Boticelli, Michelangelo, and Caravaggio, as well as many others.

Who’s your favorite Renaissance painter? Share below.

See the Uffizi for yourself (and take a private tour of the Vasari Corridor) on our Insider’s Florence tour.

if you’re a High School student (or you know one), click to learn more about our Study Abroad programs, especially for high schoolers. Our new programs offer study opportunities in Beijing, Avila, and Florence.

Click here for more information on all of our tours to Italy.

Travel Hit List: Tuscany

Friday, September 11th, 2009
Sunset on Siena. Photo: Christine Thompson. Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

Sunset on Siena. Photo: Christine Thompson, Smithsonian Magazine Photo Contest

Tuscany never fails to pleaseit’s one of our favorite destinations and we’re sure you’ll love it too. Read on to find out all about this enchanting region.

Read: about a 600-year-old pharmacy begun by Florentine monks, where staff continue to make traditional herbal elixirs, in Smithsonian magazine.

Listen: Festa Italiana – Colorful folk music from Italy from Smithsonian Folkways.

Watch: Secret message or not? Learn from Smithsonian Channel about a mysterious inscription in a fresco by the Tuscan-born painter Vasari. Some believe that his fresco, Battle of Marciano in Val di Chiana, hides another secret fresco painted by Leonardo da Vinci.

Eat and Drink: Get the best of Tuscany’s food and wine traditions, guilt-free! Join our cycling journey through Tuscany.

Check out:rare Michelangelo drawing, discovered in our own collections at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.

Travel: Now is a great time to book a journey to Tuscany.

Which destinations do you want to see on the next Travel Hit List? Share your requests with us below.

Travel Hit List: Tuscany

Wednesday, June 17th, 2009
Tuscan landscape featuring the towers of San Gimignano

Tuscan landscape featuring the towers of San Gimignano

Tuscany never fails to pleaseit’s one of our favorite destinations and we’re sure you’ll love it too. Read on to find out all about this enchanting region.

Read: A 600-year-old pharmacy begun by Florentine monks continues making traditional herbal elixirs in Smithsonian magazine.

Listen: Festa Italiana – Colorful Italian folk music from Smithsonian Folkways.

Watch: Secret message or not? Learn from Smithsonian Channel about a mysterious inscription in one of Tuscan-born painter Vasari’s frescoes– Battle of Marciano in Val di Chiana. Some believe that this fresco hides another, secret fresco painted by Leonardo da Vinci.

Eat and Drink: Get the best of Tuscany’s food and wine traditions, guilt-free! Join our cycling journey through Tuscany.

Check out: A rare Michelangelo drawing, discovered in our own collections at the Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.

Travel: Now is a great time to book a journey to Tuscany.

Which destinations do you want to see on the next Travel Hit List? Share your requests with us below.

The Undeniable Lure of Venice

Monday, May 25th, 2009

Dennis Weller is Chief Curator and curator of northern European art at the North Carolina Museum of Art in Raleigh, and has served as Study Leader for many of our tours. Click here to learn more about Dennis and traveling with him.

I love to travel, but as is often the case, near the end of a journey my consciousness often drifts toward the reality of what might await me once I return home. I can all but guarantee that such will not be the case for our Pearls of Dalmatia travelers, as Venice, one of the most familiar yet mysterious and magical cities in the world, serves as the tour’s last port of call.

Venice in the soft light of early morning Photo: Jessica Engler

Venice in the soft light of early morning Photo: Jessica Engler

Each time I return to Venice two things are sure to happen to me. I will come across a masterpiece in a church I had not previously visited, and I will get lost at least once in the maze of canals and streets that define the city. Both usually prompt a stop at a nearby café or bakery to collect my thoughts, where depending on the time of day, I might indulge in anything from a chunk of delicious olive bread to a Bellini (not a painting but a combination of prosecco wine and white peach juice).

For me, Venice is a perfect combination of food and art, or art and food (either order works for me); incredible architecture; and an unmatched quality of light and color. Whether it is early morning at the food market near the Rialto Bridge, during a mid-day visit to the Venice Biennale at the Arsenale (this year the city-wide art exhibition runs through late November), or late in the afternoon while walking along the Giudecca, Venice can best be appreciated through the use of all of one’s senses.

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